Are you thinking about getting a dog? How do you know if a dog is right for you? There are some basic characteristics of most dogs that if you are ok with them, you should be ok with having a dog.
Knowing what a dog is like can help you to decide if having a dog would be right for you. There are some things you can do to find out if a dog is right for you.
Characteristics of Most Dogs
Most dogs need to be taken outside to urinate and defecate. Some dogs will need to go during the wee hours of the morning and some dogs can hold it all night.
All dogs need to be exercised. Usually large dogs and very active dogs will need approximately 2 hours of rigorous exercise each day. Smaller dogs will need only short walks and indoor playtime.
All dogs love to play to some extent and running with, walking or playing catch with a dog is pretty much things you can count on happening.
All dogs bark, some more than others. The bark will differ as some dogs have deep voices and some have high pitched yipping noises.
Get to know how the barking sounds like from the breed of dog you are interested in by visiting a pet store, breeder or dog shelter or even a dog show.
All dogs have grooming needs and the owner will need to spend some time brushing, combing, cutting nails, and brushing teeth.
If you are not sure if you would like to do these things make sure that you have a lot of money to spend on bringing your dog to the dog groomers or spend some time at a dog shelter volunteering with dogs.
At a shelter you can walk dogs, and brush them to find out if you like to do these tasks.
Be Sure That You Are Willing to do These Things
All dogs need to eat nutritious food and have fresh clean water. Be prepared to open cans, and scoop out mushy looking stuff or feed a dog kibbles from a bag. Some owners feed dogs natural foods such as the BARF diet.
You can Google that word to find out what kind of diet this is and if you might be interested in feeding your dog this way. It requires a little more effort and time than just scooping food out of a bag. Food and water dishes need to be cleaned on a regular basis.
All dogs need to have regular vet care including shots, heartworm blood tests, and care when they are ill.
You will need to be able to clean up after your dog if it gets into the garbage, or throw up on your floor, or makes a urine accident on the carpet. You will also have to clean up the poop from the yard, or hire someone else to do this for you.
Make sure that you can financially afford a dog. Affording a dog is more than food; it includes being able to afford vet bills, grooming bills, supplies (leash, dishes, collar, ID tag, license etc.).
Do you have the time to spend with a dog, walking it, playing with it, and training it to behave?
Do you have a large enough yard for it to run and play in? If a large dog or dog that is prone to running away; do you have a fenced in yard?
Do your homework about different dog breeds, especially research about temperament, behavior, grooming needs and how well they are with kids and other pets as part of learning if a dog is right for you.
Spend time at a dog shelter, pet store, a local vet or a dog show and talk with other dog owners. You will soon have all the information you need to answer the question; is a dog right for you?